CHICAGO: Home Depot, the home improvement retailer, regards driving store visits as the key indicator of success for its efforts on mobile.

Erin Everhart, Senior Manager/Media Strategy & Mobile at Home Depot, discussed this subject during a session at the 2017 Digital Summit Chicago.

“Mobile’s key purpose is to drive people into your store … That is mobile’s key purpose. It’s not to immediately convert people and drive your return on adspend,” she said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: Love and Money: How Home Depot makes the most of mobile.)

Building on that topic, she explained that Home Depot pivoted last year to focus on store visits as its primary performance indicator for mobile.

“Location should be your primary currency for mobile,” Everhart continued. “It is a powerful signal, because it not only tells me when they are out and about; it also tells me where they are going to do that shopping.”

The inadequacy of return on adspend as a metric is due, in part, to issues like the lack of viewability for many ads. But measurement models that prioritise the final touchpoint a consumer engages with are equally problematic.

“Of course mobile looks like crap with last-click attribution,” Everhart said. “When has anybody here ever converted off a mobile display ad? Never, right?”

The ability to measure how mobile campaigns drive in-store traffic by contrast, “is a really powerful metric for us,” she added. “It’s finally tying back how people use their mobile phones and what they actually are doing in real life.”

In this context, geofencing – where customers receive mobile messages when they are in a certain radius of a particular store – is one useful tactic.

But Everhart suggested that areas where people are prone to be idly waiting – airports, post offices, banks, fast-food restaurants, and so on – may be fruitful places to try this approach, too.

“That’s where people are going to be pulling out their phones, where they are not immediately at home,” she said.

Home Depot also targets potential shoppers based on the apps they have downloaded on their phones. “If you have a Prime account and you have an Amazon app downloaded on your phone, I am able to target you,” Everhart said.

Sourced from WARC